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bein.harim.tours. After the Jews left Egypt and were approaching Canaan, Moses sent twel

After the Jews left Egypt and were approaching Canaan, Moses sent twelve spies ahead to explore the Promised Land. They returned carrying a large cluster of grapes between two poles. Wine has been made in Israel since ancient times but until recently, there was no reason to be proud of it. The wines shipped to ancient Egypt were so bad that they had to be seasoned with honey, pepper and juniper berries to make them palatable, and those sent to Rome and England in the Roman period were so thick and sweet that no modern connoisseur would possibly have approved of them. In 1870, when Jews began to produce wine again with the aid of Baron Edmond de Rothschild, most of the wine that was produced was red, sweet, unsophisticated and unappealing. In 1875, then British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli was given a bottle of kosher red wine from Palestine. After taking a few sips, he observed that it tasted "not so much like wine but more like what I expect to receive from my doctor as a remedy for a bad winter cough". Well into the 1960s, Israel justifiably suffered from a reputation of producing wines too sweet and too coarse to appeal to connoisseurs. Sophisticated wine lovers in and outside of Israel know that Israeli wineries have now risen out of the morass of cheap, cloyingly sweet wines that burn the throat and bring tears to the eyes. As wine writer Oz Clarke said, "Israel is now on the world wine map", and many local dry red and white wines are as good as some of the fine wines of California, Australia and others of the so-called "new-world" wine-producing countries. In fact, some Israeli wines are so good that they are compared favorably to the wines of the respected chateaux of France. Sometimes fruity, on occasion crisply dry, and often with excellent balance, body and bouquet, Israeli wines are now perceived as an integral and important part of dining out. Source: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs Image courtesy of Oksana Mats #israeliwine #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. Do you know these fluffy insects can strip trees bare and cause skin a

Do you know these fluffy insects can strip trees bare and cause skin and eye irritations and breathing difficulties in people and animals who come into contact with them? The caterpillar of the pine processionary moth (Thaumetopoea pityocampa) lives in pine trees in woodlands, towns and residential communities in Israel. The species derives its common name from the fact that the caterpillars move about in nose-to-tail processions between March and early May, in search of pupation sites. Image courtesy of Oksana Mats #israeliinsects #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. Below us the earth looks like a Jaffa orange turning gold in the sun.

Below us the earth looks like a Jaffa orange turning gold in the sun. (From Gioconda's diary by Nazim Hikmet) Image © Shutterstock #jaffa #jaffaoranges #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. Things are not always what they seem. Good morning from the Dead Sea!

Things are not always what they seem. Good morning from the Dead Sea! #deadsea #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. Sunset in Tzur Hadassah in Central Israel

Photo credit: Dmitry Mishin

Sunset in Tzur Hadassah in Central Israel Photo credit: Dmitry Mishin #israel #tzurhadassah #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. Outremer (meaning \"overseas\" in French) was a general name for the Cru

Outremer (meaning "overseas" in French) was a general name for the Crusader states; it originated after victories of Europeans in the First Crusade and was applied to the Kingdom of Jerusalem and some others. During the Renaissance, the term was later often equated to the area of the Levant and it remains synonymous for the Holy Land. Image: Apollonia-Arsuf, a strategically important stronghold in the Third Crusade Photo credit: Dmitry Mishin #israel #crusaders #apollonia #arsuf #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. \"We do not rejoice in victories. We rejoice when a new kind of cotton

"We do not rejoice in victories. We rejoice when a new kind of cotton is grown and when strawberries bloom in Israel" (Golda Meir, the fourth prime minister of Israel) #beinharimtours #israel #goldameir

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bein.harim.tours. Good morning from Bat Yam beach!

#beinharimtours
#israel 
#batyambeac

Good morning from Bat Yam beach! #beinharimtours #israel #batyambeach

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bein.harim.tours. \"My first thought was amazement that Jerusalem should ever have been b

"My first thought was amazement that Jerusalem should ever have been built. A more unlikely place for a famous city cannot be imagined. The arid mountains lie about it, rolling in long brown ridges against the sky… There is a splendid defiance about the situation of Jerusalem, or perhaps it would be more correct to say that no people who did not believe themselves to be in the special care of God would have dared to have built a city in defiance of all the laws of prudence…" Henry Vollam Morton, "In the steps of Jesus" Image © Shutterstock #israel #beinharimtours #jerusalem

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bein.harim.tours. The name of the man who ordered Jesus crucified and ran his trial, the

The name of the man who ordered Jesus crucified and ran his trial, the ancient infamous Roman governor of Jerusalem, Pontius Pilate, has been deciphered on a bronze ring found in excavations at the site of Herodion near the West Bank’s Bethlehem, some 50 years ago. The ring was found during a dig led by Professor Gideon Forster from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, a short time after the Six-Day War in 1968-69, as part of preparations to open the site to visitors. Image: Herodion fortress. Courtesy of G. Foerster Source: Haaretz #israel #beinharimtours #israeliarcheology #excavationsinisrael #jerusalem #pontiuspilate

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bein.harim.tours. Sir Walter Scott used the Dead Sea region as the setting for his novel

Sir Walter Scott used the Dead Sea region as the setting for his novel The Talisman. In the opening page he wrote: “…was placing slowly along the sandy deserts which lie in vicinity of the Dead Sea, or as it is called, the lake Asphaltites, were the waves of the Jordan pour themselves into an inland sea, from which there is no discharge of waters..." Image © Shutterstock #thedeadsea #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. In 1909 Jewish pioneers built their first cooperative farming village

In 1909 Jewish pioneers built their first cooperative farming village (kibbutz) on the shores of the Sea of Galilee (Kinneret) which trained Jewish immigrants in farming and agriculture. Kinneret was the cradle of the Kibbutz culture of early Zionism and the birthplace of Naomi Shemer and the burial site of Rachel - two of the most prominent Israeli poets. Image © Shutterstock #seaofgalilee #kinneret #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. Aristotle wrote: “…they say if you bind a man or beast and throw him i

Aristotle wrote: “…they say if you bind a man or beast and throw him into it he floats and does not sink beneath the surface; and that the lake is so bitter and salty that there are no fish in it and if you wet clothes in it and shake them out it cleans them”. Do you recognize the place? Image © Shutterstock #beinharimtours #israel #thedeadsea

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bein.harim.tours. The Sea of Galilee is known by many names and is referred to by Israel

The Sea of Galilee is known by many names and is referred to by Israelis as the “Kinneret,” which is Hebrew for “violin,” due to the lake's shape. Jesus’s Sermon on the Mount is believed to have been delivered on a small hill on the lake’s shore. It is the lake where Christians believe Jesus walked on water. Image © Shutterstock #israel #seaofgalillee #kinneret #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. \"Israel has its attractions. It's the most dramatic country in the wor

"Israel has its attractions. It's the most dramatic country in the world. Everybody's engaged. Everybody argues. When I leave Israel, I get a little bit bored, you know?" Shimon Peres, the 9th President of Israel Photo credit: Dmitry Mishin #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. \"Jerusalem is a port city on the shore of eternity\" (Yehuda Amichai, a

"Jerusalem is a port city on the shore of eternity" (Yehuda Amichai, an Israeli poet) Image © Shutterstock #israel #jerusalem #westernwall #wailingwall #jerusalemstone #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. Jerusalem stone is a name applied to various types of pale limestone,

Jerusalem stone is a name applied to various types of pale limestone, dolomite and dolomitic limestone, common in and around Jerusalem that have been used in building since ancient times. One of these limestones, meleke, the "royal" stone, has been used in many of the region's most celebrated structures, including the Western Wall. It is a white, coarse crystalline limestone, but once it is exposed to air it hardens and develops a pleasant yellow hue. Municipal laws in Jerusalem require that all buildings be faced with local Jerusalem stone. The ordinance dates back to the British Mandate. Photo credit: Dmitry Mishin #jerusalem #wailingwall #westernwall #israel #beinharimtours

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bein.harim.tours. \"Jerusalem has 70 names\", they say. Today, Jerusalem is called Yerusha

"Jerusalem has 70 names", they say. Today, Jerusalem is called Yerushalayim which is a derivation of a much older name, recorded as early as in the Middle Bronze Age, which has however been repeatedly re-interpreted in folk etymology, notably in Biblical Greek, where the first element of the name came to be associated with Greek hieros, "holy". A city called Rušalim in the Execration texts of the Middle Kingdom of Egypt (c. 19th century BCE) is sometimes identified as Jerusalem although this has been challenged. Jerusalem is called either Urusalim or Urušalim in the Amarna letters of Abdi-Heba (1330s BCE). Also in the Amarna letters, it is called Beth-Shalem, the house of Shalem. The Sumero-Akkadian name for Jerusalem, uru-salim, is variously etymologized to mean "foundation of [or: by] the god Shalim": from Hebrew/Semitic yry, ‘to found, to lay a cornerstone’, and Shalim, the Canaanite god of the setting sun and the nether world, as well as of health and perfection. The name "Shalem", whether as a town or a deity, is derived from the same root as the word "shalom", meaning peace, so that the common interpretation of the name is now "The City of Peace" or "Abode of Peace". #Jerusalem #israel #beinharimtours

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